Let’s face it, trips to the gym aren’t always possible for everyone. There are so many things that can prevent you from heading out of the house or making a stop before you go home from work. Luckily, you can always opt to get the best compact home gym instead. This way, you don’t even have to step out of your humble abode to start working out.
With so many great options available, how do you choose the best at-home gyms? Let this guide help you with your search.
6 of the Best Compact Home Gyms You Can Buy
Let’s cut to the chase, shall we? Let’s start our guide with our best picks for home gyms so you can have an idea which products to look from and get to know what to expect from such items.
1. Bowflex Blaze
First on our list is a feature-loaded pick, the Bowflex Blaze. A highly recommended option if you want to do a full range of workouts at home, this product can easily turn any space in your humble abode into a well-equipped home gym.
While this isn’t for heavy-duty strength training, it can still offer you a wide range of workouts. It can do more than 65 resistance-based workouts that will target various muscle groups.
Ensuring that you’ll always get a challenging workout is the Bowflex Power Rod resistance system. This will give you a standard 210 lbs of resistance but you can upgrade it to 310 and 410 lbs later on. With this, you can be sure that you can do more with this compact home gym and use it as you get in better shape.
As for its range of exercises, its various features will provide you the opportunity to do a wide range of physical activities with this piece of equipment. It’s equipped with a lat tower for your shoulders, a lower pulley squat station for your thighs, buttocks, and core, as well as a leg developer for leg days.
Its bench press is very notable as it’s not just for your chest and seating but it also has a sliding seat so you can perform rowing exercises, too. This adds a whole different whole-body workout with just the addition of small detail.
- 65+ different resistance-based workouts to choose from
- Bowflex Power Rod® resistance system
- Up to 210 lbs of Power Rod resistance, upgradable to 410 lbs
- Multiple cable or pulley positions for custom workouts
- Sliding seat rail
- Squat and lat bars included
- Leg extension/leg curl attachment
- Triple function hand grip or ankle cuffs as inclusions
- Folding bench
- Caster wheels
- 7 trainer-built workout regimens
- Has a very wide range of workouts
- Can be customized with great ease
- Great for beginners
- Suitable for rehabilitation training
- Some experienced inconsistencies with the resistance
2. Total Gym
Our next pick can be a bit of a surprise given the track record of Seen-on-TV products but with the performance of the Total Gym XLS, we believe that it deserves a shot. Besides, it’s endorsed by the legendary Chuck Norris and the timeless Christie Brinkley themselves, so why not check it out?
The Total Gym XLS can prove that it’s worth a spot in your home gym with a number of compelling reasons. For starters, it’s one sturdy piece of equipment. Made of 1¼”x2” steel tubing and 1,000 lb vinyl-coated cables with a weight capacity of 400 lbs, it can certainly take on a serious amount of weight. This makes it suitable for a lot of different users. It also guarantees that it won’t easily buckle under the weight of the user as they perform various kinds of exercises.
Another reason to give it a shot is its impressive design. It may look like it’s only for chest press routines at first glance but in reality, it will let you do over 80 kinds of workouts. These make it a lot more capable than the other items listed here. It’s really quite surprising how versatile this item is. And with 6 levels of resistance, you can be sure that it will help you achieve your fitness goals.
On top of this, it’s also very space-effective. It’s meant to fold up so you can store it very easily. Once folded, it can take up very little space, so it can suit any home gym. It doesn’t matter if you have an actual exercise room or if you just allot some free space for workouts in your apartment.
As a bonus, this product is also fuss-free in terms of assembly. It comes fully assembled, you just need to unfold it once you take it out of the box and you’re good to go.
- Over 80 workouts possible
- 6 levels of resistance from 6 to 26 degrees
- 1,000 lb vinyl-coated cables
- Upgraded pulley system
- 1.5” high-density foam glide-board padding
- Steel tubing construction
- Foldable mechanism
- 400lb maximum weight capacity
- Ano assembly required
- High weight limit
- Lots of workouts possible
- Space saver
- Sturdy construction
- Great value for your money
- Requires some positioning adjustments for optimal workouts
- Can be quite difficult to fold up or down with just one person
3. Bodyboss 2.0
The Bodyboss 2.0 may seem like a gimmick as it doesn’t resemble any gym equipment at all but you have to cut it some slack. This crowd-funded product is truly innovative, promising to give you the most compact multi gym setup ever.
What exactly is the Bodyboss 2.0, you ask? In the simplest of terms, it’s a complete resistance system, offering the ability to let you customize your workouts for you. It’s designed for portability, thus its folding base and collapsible bar. With these, you can get a gym-quality workout even in the smallest of spaces or just about anywhere you feel like breaking a sweat.
The design of the Bodyboss 2.0 really sets it apart from the competition. Instead of using a clunky tower of metal, it only has a base with several holes that will let you thread the resistance bands in various ways. The kind of workout you can do depends on the configuration of your system, making this exercise product extremely versatile.
How demanding are the workouts? It again depends on how you’ve threaded the bands to the base. Do it loosely and you’ll get about 30 lbs of resistance. At its tightest, you can get 70-80 lbs of resistance. With such a simple set of items, you can already do hundreds of challenging workouts.
If you’re thinking that a simple set of resistance bands will already let you do the same things this product offers, you’re mistaken. The VectorFit Base of this product really sets it apart from the run-of-the-mill resistance bands. With it, you can maximize the use of your resistance bands and give you a more comfortable workout. No more need to ensure that you’re weight is on the band as you try to exert any effort to stretch the bands with this add-on.
- VectorFit Base that is resistant to up to 500 lbs of force
- Collapsible workout bar
- 2 custom cloth resistance bands
- 2 wrist/ankle straps
- 2 handles
- Door anchor with ring
- Accessories bag
- Optimized design
- Very easy to work with
- Versatile and will let you do a wide range of workouts
- Convenient, space-saving, and portable
- Durable bands
- Solid construction
- Still can be too bulky to lug around despite its folding design
- Workout instructions cost extra
4. Edge Cross X
Another very interesting pick is the Edge Cross X. This compact home gym also doesn’t look like equipment available in fitness centers but it can still give you a full range of exercises. It’s especially great for your core but it’s also beneficial for other muscle groups using the right workouts.
Dubbed as the Top Cutting-Edge Fitness Gear For 2020 by the LA Times, there’s definitely some hype about this product. This is possibly why some folks hesitate about it as it’s really just a 3-piece set of exercise equipment. So if you’ve used them on separate occasions, you might end up asking what’s so special about them?
Upon closer inspection, the EdgeCross X unit is not necessarily your run-of-the-mill handled barbell with spheres. The handles are adjustable to give you better handling and so you can use it for various workouts. The spheres are of a fixed weight, too, as they’re not necessarily for lifting but to give you good leverage and balance.
The combination of the three components creates challenging routines that will engage your muscles to give them a good workout. You’re to use them to get into various positions that you are supposed to hold yourself in. By holding the position, your muscles will be greatly challenged and strained which in turn will strengthen and whip them into top shape.
This product is actually very challenging that you’re guaranteed to get a great workout in just 10 minutes. So if you don’t really have the time or space for workouts at home, this compact multi-gym can be a good match for you.
- EdgeCross X bar with sphere ends
- 2 adjustable handles
- Resistance bands
- Balance wheel
- Exercise mat
- Online training videos
- Very simple premise
- Challenging workouts
- Great for the core and other muscle groups
- Made in the USA
- Solid construction
- Quite pricey
5. Gold’s Gym
If you don’t want to experiment with new and gimmicky home gym products, it’s best to stick with something tried and tested. The Gold’s Gym Icon Fitness XRS 50 would be a solid choice in such situations since it is made by a trusted brand that has been in the fitness industry for decades.
The XRS 50 is a high-quality multi-station compact home gym that is fashioned after the commercial-grade units available in Gold’s Gym locations. This item is designed to let you bring home the great functionality of the equipment you’ll find in fitness centers so you’re guaranteed to get gym-quality results at home.
A combination of a chest press and fly arm station, you can certainly do a lot of different workouts with this piece of fitness equipment. It can target different muscle groups, giving you a full-body workout that will not let you make up for missing gym days.
With its solid build and heavy-duty design, you can certainly opt to miss going to the gym if you have this at home. With 112 lbs of plates and a 112-lb weight stack, you can already access up to 280 lbs of resistance with this item. That’s a lot for home workouts, so this can already meet your strength training requirements if you’re not necessarily bulking up.
In addition to this, it can further guarantee durability with its 300-lb maximum user weight capacity. This guarantees that this product is solidly built and is suitable for more users.
- Chest press/fly arm station
- Up to 280 lbs of resistance
- 112 lb. vinyl weight stack
- 112 lbs. of plates
- 4-roll leg developer
- High pulley system
- Multi-grip lat bar
- Heavily padded seat and backrest
- Exercise chart
- 300 lbs maximum user weight capacity
- Has a relatively small footprint
- Offers the same experience to going to the gym
- Solidly built
- Surprisingly simple assembly
- Comfortable seat and backrest
- Limited amount of workouts
6. Bowflex PR300
Capping off our list is the Bowflex PR3000. This is a popular choice for a lot of folks who want a reliable mid-range multi-gym at home that isn’t too fussy. It’s a total-body home gym that will let you do a lot of different workouts without the need for numerous other attachments and accessories.
There are a number of reasons why the PR3000 is a popular pick. First is its wide range of workouts. You can do more than 50 different workouts from this single home gym. It’s resistance bands are designed for different ways of gripping, guaranteeing excellent versatility. These will definitely allow you to execute different routines safely and effectively.
Its convenience also allowed it to win over lots of fitness buffs. It has a no-change cable pulley system so there’s no need to tweak its settings every time you’re switching from one exercise to another. You can just change your position and do what you have to do so your workout won’t be disrupted. It also comes with an integrated instructional workout guide so you can quickly refer to the sign to try a different exercise.
Making it all the more attractive is its upgradable resistance. Initially, you can work with 5 to 210 lbs of resistance with this compact home gym but you can upgrade it to 310 lbs of resistance. This is already enough for a lot of home gym users but since other Bowflex models can be upgraded to 410 lbs, this can be a bit of a stepdown. It’s best to assess your needs first before making a call.
- Bowflex Power Rod® resistance system
- Over 50 gym-quality exercises possible
- Up to 210 lbs resistance, upgradeable to 310 lbs
- Built-in instructional workout guide
- Multi-use hand grip and ankle cuffs
- 4” upholstered roller cushions
- No-change cable pulley system
- Heavy-duty steel frame
- Solid frame build
- Provides a very wide range of workouts
- Smooth and quiet operation
- Doesn’t take up a lot of space
- Suitable for rehabilitation
- Easy to assemble
- Other Bowflex home gym models can be upgraded to 410 lbs
- Power Rods can lose resistance over time
Choosing the Best Compact Gym for Your Home
As our list above would have probably shown you, there are so many options when it comes to the best compact gym equipment. Choosing just one can really be quite confusing, so it’s important that you get the right information that you need to make the right decision.
If our product recommendations weren’t enough to help you land on a specific item, here are a few more things to take into consideration:
The kinds of exercises you want to do.
In our opinion, some of the most important things you should keep in mind when choosing a multi-gym equipment for your home are the kinds of exercises that you wish to do. It wouldn’t make sense to get something that will let you perform workouts that you don’t want to do, right? So make sure to look for one with the features that will allow you to execute the exercises that you want to do.
The amount of resistance the equipment can provide.
Real talk, lots of home-quality fitness equipment fail in this area. Many of them, especially the cheap ones come with low-quality resistance components that lose their tightness with regular wear and tear. This is the most disappointing part and is one of the main reasons why most fitness buffs opt to head to the gym instead or splurge on expensive, commercial-grade equipment.
It doesn’t mean, however, that you can’t find a good, affordable product that will last you a while. You just need to be more particular when searching so you can be sure that it’s made of high-quality parts.
How do you find out about such details? Read reviews. While they’re not always the most reliable, they can still come in handy if you want to learn about the durability of the item you’re planning to get. Reviewers often focus on this detail so you’ll definitely find out about other people’s experience in terms of the construction and material quality of the item you’re eyeing.
The amount of space you have.
As our list above shows, compact at-home gyms still come in different shapes and sizes. Some are very small and compact while others can still take up a significant amount of space. This is why you should also take into consideration the amount of space that you can allot for your home workouts.
Those with actual home gyms, garages, or just extra room in their homes shouldn’t have any issues in getting a non-folding option or anything that can be set up permanently. Those with smaller spaces might want to look for folding and even portable picks instead.
Last but not the least, your budget should also play a role in your decision-making when buying a compact multi-gym. Again, as our list above shows, these products come in various price points so you really have a lot of options available. Having a budget will help you narrow down your options significantly. And combined with the other considerations above, you’ll be able to be steered in the right direction.
Don’t worry about the quality, however. There are reliable-quality options at lower price points so you can still end up with a great product. You just need to be more discerning when searching for them.
To further help you head in the right direction when searching for the best compact gym equipment for the home, here are some of the most commonly asked questions that are related to the task.
What equipment should I buy for a home gym?
There are quite a lot of great tools, implements, and pieces of equipment that you can buy for a home gym. However, when creating your own fitness station at home, the stuff you’ll need will depend on the actual activities that you wish to do.
Some will already make do with a few dumbbells, kettlebells, and yoga mats. Others might prefer to go all out and deck their basement with different kinds of weights. Those who want to replicate a fitness center, however, should look for different machines and workout equipment. It all really depends on what kind of and how much exercise you wish to do at home.
What is the best compact home gym?
It’s hard to say what the best compact home gym is because people have different preferences when it comes to their workouts. What might work for one person might not appeal to lots of others so it would be ideal to look for what suits your needs most.
Are home gyms worth it?
With the right product and one’s drive to actually use the equipment they bought, a home gym can certainly be worth the investment. These purchases will become a waste if no one uses them and they’ll just add more clutter to your home. So if you really want to make the most out of your purchase, make sure to go for one that you will actually use.
With everything said above, the decision is still ultimately yours when it comes to choosing the best compact home gym. Only you can decide which one is your perfect match so it’s crucial that you make an informed decision. For this, we’re confident that our guide above will come in handy, so make sure to keep in mind our tips and suggestions.